Italian sculptor Pompeo Coppini the father of modern-day Fiesta San Antonio

Apr 10, 2019 732

BY: Richard A. Marini

Sleuthing through dusty old papers and online newspaper archives, Charlotte Cox believes she has uncovered unknown details about the history of what we now call Fiesta San Antonio. And playing a lead role in the century-old drama was Pompeo Coppini, the Italian-born sculptor perhaps best known for the Alamo Cenotaph and the Littlefield Fountain at the University of Texas at Austin.

Some of Cox’s research confirmed what was already known: that Coppini designed what might be the first Fiesta medal, he organized the Knights of Omala (“Alamo” spelled backward) to run what was then called the Spring Carnival, and that the event’s first royal was King Selamat (“tamales” in reverse).

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